Matt Jobson made his first-grade debut for Newcastle in 2001 and but only managed four more appearances for the Knights leading into this year's National Rugby League (NRL) season.
Yet the 22-year-old's decision to sign a two-year deal with the New Zealand Warriors this week was not wholly influenced by the calibre of players in front of him - as his career statistics at the Knights are misleading.
The prop/second rower made his debut against the Roosters in June 2001 but broke his ankle in his next outing and was out for the season.
Last year's pre-season World Club Challenge clash with English champions Bradford saw his injury jinx continue, a leg injury sidelining him for 16 weeks.
He eventually played three games at the tail end of a season where Matt Parsons and Josh Perry held sway up front while Ben Kennedy, Steve Simpson and Clint Newton were backrow fixtures.
However, this season the 98kg utility has been a regular starter or otherwise on the bench until a minor shoulder injury suffered against Penrith sidelined him late last month.
He will be back in action when the Knights resume after this weekend's bye.
"I've started 10 games this year and been involved in every one bar the last couple. I was always going to be a regular part of the side here," he said.
So his move to Ericsson Stadium was based on a lack of money rather than opportunity.
"It was just a salary cap decision. Because we've so many good players here they have to be paid good money.
"I've reached a stage in my career where I'm commanding a little bit of money also and unfortunately the Knights couldn't fit me under," the Newcastle junior said.
"I would have loved to have stayed with the Knights because Newcastle is my home and I love it here but the club wasn't going to be in a position to offer me much money after they just re-signed Josh Perry and Daniel Abraham."
Jobson is understood to have knocked back the Wests Tigers before opting to shift across the Tasman. The two-year deal is believed to be worth around $A100,000 ($NZ114,130) a season but the bottom-line was not the only consideration.
"They (Warriors) are a strong club. I'm going from one strong club to another to further my education. I think it's the best step for me," said Jobson who is studying art and teaching.
He played the Warriors in the opening round this season but was not too familiar with the country.
"I've been there (New Zealand) a couple of times myself but I don't know too much about the place, it'll be a new experience."
Jobson did not anticipate any problems assimilating to the Warriors style as both clubs rely on their star playmakers at halfback � Stacey Jones and Andrew Johns.
"The Warriors play around Stacey like we do around Joey (Johns). A lot of our stuff in the forwards is just about getting our backs in the best position."